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Where’s my brush? My toenail clippers? My sandpaper? My anxiety about sending my latest boulder-problem project often begins when I’m packing my bag to head to the alpine of Rocky Mountain National Park. While it’s easy for me to remember my shoes, food, and water, the smaller but necessary self-care tools for bouldering often get left out of my backpack. I need to clean the holds, trim my nails, and take care of my skin, but by the time I actually land a coveted spot at the Bear Lake parking lot, I’m lucky if I remember one of those items on my overstoker trip up to the boulders.
The Clutch Climbing Brush combines three bouldering self-care tools in one, offering a high-density boar’s hair brush, a replaceable pair of stainless-steel nail clippers, and a replaceable sandpaper/skin-filing strip. It easily fits inside my chalk bucket and has helped ease the anxiety-fueled packing rush. Further, the multi-tool means that I can grab one tool, pop off my shoes, brush holds, and take care of my hands without having to sort through my bag to find all the proper accoutrements.
On the performance side, the boar’s hair brush does a solid job of cleaning grease, chalk, and grime off holds. The sandpaper strip on the neck of the brush behind the bristles, though small, has enough grit to file down worn edges and take care of flappers. And the nail clippers are stowed neatly inside the brush’s body—the only shortcoming is that it’s a bit too easy to lose the tiny end cap you need to remove for nail trimming. On the plus side, though, the brush’s larger body did make it easier to find when I fumbled it in the talus of Upper Upper Chaos Canyon, where your standard-sized brush and nail clippers would be long gone in the talus. This is a sweet little bouldering multi-tool: the Swiss Army knife of pebble-wrestling.